FRIDAY’S GRATITUDE: Nyagakecuru wo mu bisi bya Huye, the indomitable

The original text by Mukundente Ariane,translated by Afriquela1ère.com/en

A Friday’s gratitude like no other,dedicated to “Nyagakecuru wo mu bisi bya Huye”,a historical, courageous, heroic and extraordinary personality.

Nyagakecuru, whose real name is Benginzagi, came from the high mountains of Huye located at 2400 meters above sea level, in the south of the country (in Sovu). She lived in the 16th century in the 1500s. She was a leader born, married to Samukende, King of Abenengwe, whose Kingdom was called u Bungwe. This kingdom included the regions of South Busanza, Bufundu, Nyaruguru, Bashumba, Nyakare and Buyenzi.

While in all the traditions and civilizations of the world rebellions against the authorities have always been led by men, Nyagakecuru is the exception that confirms the rule. Indeed, she led for a long time the rebellion against the central power “Rwanda rwa Gasabo” of King Ruganzu II Ndoli, because she refused to pay him tribute (amaturo) as did the other kingdoms. She overshadowed her husband, so much so that today we talk about the fearsome army of Nyagakecuru and her ferocious python that guarded his house.

At the time of his expansionist conquests against other kingdoms, King Ruganzu II Ndoli of Banyiginya suffered bitter failures each time when he ventured to attempt the invasion of the Bungwe Kingdom of Nyagakecuru. After the death of King Samukende, it was his son Rubuga who acceded to the throne of Bungwe and it was on his reign that his mother Nyagakecuru became invincible against the formidable army “ibisumizi” of King Ruganzu.

The latter changed his strategy to defeat Nyagakecuru. He publicly acknowledged his defeat before her and to mark this armistice, he sent a herd of goats to Nyagakecuru. But it was actually the equivalent of a Trojan horse. The goats ravaged the fence of the bushes that surrounded her house where the famous python watched.

The house exposed and discovered, the Python left his post for lack of shelter. The plan worked very well. King Ruganzu’s attack, this time, proved decisive. His ibisumizi army managed to encircle Nyagakecuru’s house and killed her and her entire army.The Bungwe, long feared and respected by other kingdoms thanks to the leadership of Nyagakecuru wo mu bisi bya Huye thus fell into the hands of the central power of King Ruganzu II Ndoli.

It is said that since the destruction of the house of Nyagakecuru which took place between 1510-1543, this place located at the top of Mount Huye was never inhabited again (see photo).

This explains why Nyagakecuru became a legend and entered the imagination of Rwandan society.

And it is for this reason that we owe her a well-felt tribute. An example of courage and determination for all women.

Nyagakecuru was avant-garde and a free electron in a very distant time when women were considered objects for men.

A feminist before her time…

Our respects to this exceptional woman who braved the invasion of King Ruganzu and thus proved, nearly five centuries before our era, that women are equal to men.

Nyagakecuru wo mu bisi bya Huye, niyubahwe

(Dear readers, as of this Friday, your blog opens Afriquela1ère.com/en the new category “FRIDAY’S GRATITUDE”, a pen by Mrs. Ariane Mukundente who has authorized us to reproduce her articles for you. Never miss these articles every Friday with Ariane Mukundente).

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